news: TURKEY

EU bans live bird imports

The European Commission says it will ban all Turkish live bird and feather imports, after a bird flu outbreak. The decision came after Turkish authorities slaughtered up to 2,000 birds in the north-west of the country in an effort to control the disease. As many as 1,500 turkeys are said to have died on a farm in the region.

Results of tests to establish if cases found in Turkey and Romania are the H5N1 strain, which has killed more than 60 people, were due to be known by last Wednesday. Reports said the initial tests on the Romanian cases had proved negative for the strain. Thousands of people have been receiving jabs in Romania in the wake of the suspected outbreak. The EU has also offered to send veterinary experts to Turkey to assess the situation.

The Turkish authorities have quarantined a three kilometre area around the affected farm in the province of Balikesir, near the Aegean Sea, as a precautionary measure.